Election

Found these points on the doctrine of Election and found them to bee deeply satisfying and fulfilling. What do you think?

--Election is corporate and concerns a holy people, a covenant community, and not primarily individuals.

--Election of the covenant community is accomplished through its connection to Christ via a sacramental and ecclesiological framework.

--Baptism is the means by which individuals enter the covenant community of the elect.

--Election of the covenant community entails God’s missionary efforts to redeem the remainder of humanity.

--The covenant community is an eschatological community which prefigures the age to come in the here and now.

--Election does not create a class of the elite but rather a class of servants.

--Any pre-creation acts of predestination, on the part of God toward his creatures, seems to entail his choice of a bride for his Son, and not of individuals into that bride.

--Foreknowledge seems to be the fore-loving of the covenant community rather than the fore-seeing of who would ultimately compose such a community.

--Salvation is dependent upon one’s continual perseverance in the body of Christ.

--Election is dependent on God’s faithfulness, and thus we have the best grounds upon which to make our calling and election sure.

Comments

Joab said…
Hah. I read this and thought, "Well, this sounds like it fits in nicely with Catholic theology." Then I checked the source!

Do I win any points for that?
Joab said…
Oops! My bad. Upon further investigation, I discovered that it was not a Catholic site, but rather an Anglican blog.

Still, I was close.
Fletcher said…
Why the requirement of baptism to be among the elect?
Abu Daoud said…
Hi Fletcher,

"Baptism is the means by which individuals enter the covenant community of the elect."

I think this is all based on the theology of Barth, who is working from the Reformed tradition (not Catholic). In the original Protestant churches (Anglican, Lutheran, Reformed) baptism was still indeed understood to be a rite of initiation. A way of symbolizing and actualizing that a person has entered into the COMMUNITY of the elect.

The emphasis I think here is that baptism is entrance into a community. This is, of course, at odds with current non-denom Christianity which would say that interior psychological and emotional agreement with certain propositions (Jesus is Lord, Jesus died for my sins, etc) is what makes you part of that community.

But this whole theory of election is trying to get away from individualism I think (a reason I like it), and the evangelical position of interior agreement is profoundly individualistic. Baptism as a rite of entry is external and also permits for children and babies to be part of the covenant community.

Joab: Yes, five points for Joab :-)
Joab said…
I would also point out that entire households, in the Acts of the Apostles, are brought into 'The Way' by baptism. Are we to presume that this excludes the numerous babies that any household would have included? Also, it is difficult to imagine that the entire household had the same profound 'conversion' experience. More likely, being good and obedient members of the household, they followed their master into a new covenant, which they entered by being baptized. As your post said, this initiated their salvation, but did not assure it.
SocietyVs said…
"Salvation is dependent upon one’s continual perseverance in the body of Christ." (AD)

I would say this is a tricky thing to say as 100%. This makes slavation dependant upon our works in some sense? Is it?
SocietyVs said…
Abu I got a real interesting question for you - are you Anglican? I have recently boycotted 3 major churches for their abuse of my Native people in Canada - Catholic, United, and Anglican.
Abu Daoud said…
Society: guilty as charged, but not from the Anglican Church of Canada. Not sure if that is important to you or not.

The church over here is called The Episcopal Church of Jerusalem and the Middle East (ECJME), though as mentioned previously we are leaving the country because the gov't has "asked" us to.

Hope we can still be friends :-)
Abu Daoud said…
"Salvation is dependent upon one’s continual perseverance in the body of Christ." (AD)

I don't think this nec. makes one's salvation dependant on works, because perseverance itself comes from God's grace.

In fact, our good works also come from God's grace, or perhaps more precisely, are done by and in that grace.

I don't like using the grace-works dichotomy. I think it's unbiblical to be honest.
SocietyVs said…
"Hope we can still be friends :-)" (AD)

Of course we can, just thought I'd let you know I wrote a blog on why I am boycotting (see my site about boycotting religions)...just checking to see if there was a way you could look into this - but of your not associated - then there is not much you can do.
SocietyVs said…
I'll give more comments on this post - since I have nothing better to do.

- Election is corporate and concerns a holy people, a covenant community, and not primarily individuals.

So if it is within community (which I do agree with) - which community? As we both know - Catholics and Protestants split decades ago and have now various communities and beliefs. How does this all work out in this neat little belief system set down?

-Election of the covenant community is accomplished through its connection to Christ via a sacramental and ecclesiological framework.

Sacramental (rites) and ecclesiological (structure) establish the covenant w/Christ - I have to disagree - how can a symbol pull us towards the greatness of God? And for that matter how can structure be the medium for meeting God? I am not saying there isn't something to the ideas - but I also think those 2 things have also made this latest generation just as Pharisee-itical as in Jesus' days (at times and in many ways).

-Baptism is the means by which individuals enter the covenant community of the elect.

Wouldn't being 'born again' enter us into this community? Baptism as a symbol is something we can see - verification by the elect - but in no means tells us the inward workings of the heart of the person - baptism now seems to serve as some way we can tell if someone is serious about their faith (and maybe that's the point of it?).

-Election of the covenant community entails God’s missionary efforts to redeem the remainder of humanity.

I don't disagree here but I have questions about what missionary looks like? Door to door? Witnessing? Etc. Or just living the faith and showing others that life can be fuller than previously known?

-The covenant community is an eschatological community which prefigures the age to come in the here and now.

The kingdom of heaven in the 'now' - I agree 100%.

-Election does not create a class of the elite but rather a class of servants.

How's about a class of God's children? Or the new Abrahamic community (totality of the promise made to Abraham)?

-Any pre-creation acts of predestination, on the part of God toward his creatures, seems to entail his choice of a bride for his Son, and not of individuals into that bride.

I don't disagree here but what I find interesting about this is a sort of using of humanity for the glory of Jesus? Take out the individual and that's how this idea comes off.

-Foreknowledge seems to be the fore-loving of the covenant community rather than the fore-seeing of who would ultimately compose such a community.

I agree - I would even scrap the idea of predestination altogether since it matters very little to 0% for people living in the present anyways.

-Salvation is dependent upon one’s continual perseverance in the body of Christ.

So if someone leaves they are not saved?

-Election is dependent on God’s faithfulness, and thus we have the best grounds upon which to make our calling and election sure.

I agree - leave all things in the hands of God - which leaves us with very little room to make any judgements on behalf of eternal security and who is and isn't a Christian...I like that.
Abu Daoud said…
Hi Society, great questions, but can we talk on Skype about it? I think it would be much more efficient. E-mail your Skype name and we'll chat if you like.

winterlightning
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safe-mail
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ne
SocietyVs said…
Hi Abu, I am not on Skype - but I will look into it - sounds like a good place to have discussions.

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